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Idyllic archipelago in Southern Norway - Photo: Anders Martinsen
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Idyllic archipelago in Southern Norway Photo: Anders Martinsen

Sørlandet - The Norwegian Riviera

The Norwegian Riviera has been the number one summer holiday destination for Norwegians for decades, while remaining a hidden gem for many visitors.

Characteristic architecture

During the summer months, the picturesque towns and villages are teeming with visitors. The clapboard houses, painted white, red, ochre or blue, often have a red-tiled roof, and often face the sea. Such houses and cabins  are available for hire, as are boats and canoes.

Life by the coast

The summer holiday can very well be spent in a boat, along the Norwegian Riviera, mooring on a secluded island to go swimming, or visiting historic locations like Lyngør or Merdø. Fishing is good along the entire coast, and the smooth rock slopes typical of the Southern Norwegian archipelago are perfect for sunbathing. There are also many good beaches to choose from.

Picturesque towns

The towns of Risør, Tvedestrand, Arendal, Grimstad, Lillesand and Mandal are spread like a string of pearls along the coastline. These are former timber ports that grew when shipbuilding became an industry, and the seafarers brought home inspiration and knowledge from the European main ports.

Other southern towns like Flekkefjord, Farsund, Lyngdal and Kristiansand are also located by the sea. With their narrow streets, the low-rise wooden houses centred around market squares and harbours, an abundance of flowers and various shops, cafés and fine restaurants, these towns are popular with visitors.

Off-season activities

The Norwegian Riviera is calmer off season, and with merely a few hours between the sea and the high mountains, many visitors choose to come then and enjoy the activities that the region has to offer. Hiking along the coast or to mountain summits, fishing and cycling are all popular activities.

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Last updated:  2014-01-14
 - Photo: Johan Wildhagen/Innovation Norway

Interest:  Nature attractions

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Idyllic archipelago in Southern Norway - Photo: Anders Martinsen

Sørlandet - The Norwegian Riviera

The Norwegian Riviera has been the number one summer holiday destination for Norwegians for decades, while remaining a hidden gem for many visitors.

Sørlandet - The Norwegian Riviera

Source: Visitnorway

Top attractions in Southern Norway

Enjoy a stroll around Lyngør and Merdø, take a boat trip through Blindleia and visit Lindesnes Lighthouse, Norway’s southernmost point.

What to do in Kristiansand

Take a stroll through Kristiansand's charming old town, go on a boat trip to picturesque Lillesand, or visit the former naval base at Odderøya.

Attractions in Kristiansand

Catch a show at Kilden, Kristiansand's new performing arts centre, go meet wild animals at the zoo, or take a nostalgic trip on an old steam train.

Attractions in the Arendal Region

Visit charming Lyngør, or see the beautiful protected landscape Hove on Tromøy. Swim in potholes and learn about the culture of the region.

About Birkenes, Risør, Kristiansand, Kvinesdal, Farsund...

The Arendal Region

Region Arendal offers skerries, saltwater, festivals, arts and culture, tranquillity and activities in nature such as fishing, canoeing and hiking.

Sirdal

Sirdal is known for good hiking and skiing. The famous mountain plateau of Kjerag in the Lysefjord is not far away.

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